GOING HUNGRY is commonly associated with Third World countries. Unfortunately, it is a problem that is all too common here in the United States.
About 50 million Americans - including 17 million children - now live in families that lack sufficient food. Those are disturbing and eye-opening numbers for a country that espouses the American Dream.
The U.S. Postal Service and its letter carriers are attempting to remedy the situation Saturday. This marks the 20th straight year they have undertaken the humanitarian effort.
The Stamp Out Hunger in America food drive benefits Feeding America, the nation's largest domestic hunger-relief organization.
This year's massive undertaking is made possible by a coalition of entities who are joining hands Saturday to help feed those in need: The Postal Service, the National Association of Letter Carriers, Campbell Soup Co., Feeding America and other partner organizations. It is the nation's most ambitious single-day food drive in local communities across America. It is one that we encourage all those able to passionately support.
The Stamp Out Hunger campaign has met with resounding success. In 2011, letter carriers collected 70.2 million pounds of food donated by customers on their delivery routes, which marked the eighth consecutive year the total food collection was at least 70 million pounds.
That is something we all can feel good about. However, the number of people in this country going hungry continues to escalate. Thus, we challenge local residents to step up once again Saturday to make this year's food drive the most successful yet.
To participate in the 20th Stamp Out Hunger food drive, residents are encouraged to leave a sturdy bag containing non-perishable foods, such as canned soup, canned vegetables, pasta, rice or cereal next to their mailbox prior to the time of regular mail delivery on Saturday. Letter carriers will collect these food donations as they deliver the mail and take them to their local food bank or pantry.
By placing any of the aforementioned food items out for the postal carrier Saturday it will truly lead to a special delivery.